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VMNH confirms discovery of 500 million-year-old fossil
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A rare stromatolite--among the earliest evidence for living things-- discovered at the Boxley Blue Ridge Quarry. It is approximately 500 million years old. (VMNH photo)

Friday, June 27, 2008

Scientists with the Virginia Museum of Natural History in Martinsville have confirmed the discovery of a 500 million-year-old fossil called a stromatolite.

Officials at the Martinsville museum say the fossil was found at the Boxley Blue Ridge Quarry.

The museum says in a release that fragments and sections of stromatolites are fairly common, but it is very rare for a whole stromatolite "head" to be collected intact.

The specimen is the first-ever intact stromatolite head found in Virginia, and is one of the largest complete "heads" in the world, the release states.

Officials say the stromatolites are among the earliest known life forms, and they are important in helping scientists understand more about environments that existed in the past.

 

 
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